Secular Groups Urge Senate to Oppose Christian Nationalist William Barr for Attorney General

For Immediate Release: January 14, 2019
Contact: Paul Fidalgo, Communications Director - (207) 358-9785

The Center for Inquiry (CFI) urged the Senate Committee on the Judiciary to reject the nomination of William Barr for U.S. Attorney General, citing his demonstrated contempt for nonreligious Americans and for church-state separation. The Committee will hold hearings to consider Barr’s nomination on Tuesday, January 15.

The Center for Inquiry, in collaboration with the Secular Coalition for America, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, and American Atheists, told the committee that Barr has a record of open hostility to secular Americans and to the secular character of our constitutional government.

In public remarks, Barr has blamed secularism for problems real and imagined, including our nation’s “moral decline,” and has called for secular, constitutional U.S. law to be replaced with “God’s law.”

“Barr has disqualified himself from the office of Attorney General,” said Nick Little, CFI’s vice president and general counsel. “His overt hostility toward Americans without religious belief or affiliation makes him unfit to serve as the chief lawyer for the United States. We urge Americans who believe in the secular character of our republic to tell their Senators to oppose this nomination.”

Jason Lemieux, CFI’s director of Government Affairs, noted, “Twenty-nine percent of Americans hold no religious beliefs. In a country founded on the separation of church and state, it is inconceivable that the Department of Justice would be led by a person who attacks secular Americans and the First Amendment in this way. Americans deserve better than a Christian nationalist for Attorney General.”

Read the letter here.

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The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason & Science, the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, and the Council for Secular Humanism. The Center for Inquiry strives to foster a secular society based on reason, science, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. Visit CFI on the web at